Customizing the PARCC


According to an article in The Journal written by Dian Schaffhauser post on 11/12/15, The Partnership for the Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers will be customizing its online testing offerings to expand its reach into states outside of the consortium. While the current PARCC tests and assessment resources will continue to be available to states, in time for the next school year the new bundling of its Common Core-oriented assessments will also include these options:

  • The current PARCC exams delivered on a Pearson assessment platform that allows states to customize the test and add their own items;
  • The PARCC test blueprint and content but in a form that enables a state or group of states to select their own vendor for administering the testing;
  • Test items available in blocks to let states design their own assessments using PARCC test questions but in a way that also allows them to make state comparisons across those item blocks, assuming the states adhere to agreed-upon rules for test administration; and

“The consortium of states who worked to develop the PARCC test have always had three simple goals: to develop a 21st century, high quality test focused on the skills that matter for success in life, the ability to compare student outcomes across states and to provide honest accurate information to parents and educators that can be used to improve classroom instruction,” said Hanna Skandera, New Mexico Secretary of Education, speaking on behalf of PARCC’s Governing Board in a prepared statement.

They need flexibility in creating testing products that meet all states’ unique circumstances.”

The new options may help reverse the fortunes of PARCC, which has fewer than half the members it had when it was originally formed. When the consortium first received funding from the US Department of Education under the “Race to the Top Assessment Program, it had a coalition of 26 states and administrative divisions. The current participants encompass 11 states as well as the District of Columbia.


States have asked for flexibility in delivering the PARCC. It appears that Pearson has heard the requests.